The Armiger

The armiger is probably one of the most house-ruled classes in IH, second only to the arcanist. The basic objectives of this revision are:


Class Statistics

Hit Die: 1d4+6/level.

Skill Groups: Athletics.

Skill Points/Level: 4 + Int modifier (x4 at 1st level).

Level

Base Attack Bonus

Base Defense Bonus

Special

Armor Feat Mastery

Power Feat Mastery

Tactics Feat Mastery

Other Feat Mastery

1

+1

+0

Armor mastery, master armorer, tough as nails

2

1

2

+2

+1

Bonus feat

2

1

3

+3

+2

Armor pool, armor ability

3

2

1

4

+4

+3

Unyielding defense

3

2

1

5

+5

+3

Armored redoubt

4

3

2

1

6

+6

+4

Bonus feat

4

3

2

1

7

+7

+5

Armor ability

5

4

3

2

8

+8

+6

 

5

4

3

2

9

+9

+6

Reinforced defenses

6

5

4

3

10

+10

+7

Bonus feat

6

5

4

3

11

+11

+8

Armor ability

7

6

5

4

12

+12

+9

Improved unyielding defense

7

6

5

4

13

+13

+9

Armor as second skin

8

7

6

5

14

+14

+10

Bonus feat

8

7

6

5

15

+15

+11

Armor ability

9

8

7

6

16

+16

+12

 

9

8

7

6

17

+17

+12

Armor ability

10

9

8

7

18

+18

+13

Bonus feat

10

9

8

7

19

+19

+14

Armor ability

10

9

8

7

20

+20

+15

Supreme reinforced defenses

10

9

8

7

Class Features

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Armigers are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, all types of armour, and all shields.

Armor Mastery

You are better able than others to take advantage of the benefits of armour, and mitigate its drawbacks. When you wear armour, you improve its abilities according to the table below.

Level

Max Dex increase

Armor check penalty reduction

Speed
category

1

+0

0

1 category

2

+0

0

1 category

3

+0

0

1 category

4

+0

0

1 category

5

+0

1

1 category

6

+1

1

1 category

7

+1

1

1 category

8

+1

1

1 category

9

+1

2

1 category

10

+1

2

1 category

11

+2

2

2 categories

12

+2

2

2 categories

13

+2

3

2 categories

14

+2

3

2 categories

15

+2

3

2 categories

16

+3

3

2 categories

17

+3

4

2 categories

18

+3

4

2 categories

19

+3

4

2 categories

20

+3

4

2 categories

Master Armorer

You gain access to the special Craft (Master Armorer) skill that allows you to create armour. You have ranks in this skill equal to your armiger level +3, but you can use this skill only to create and repair suits of armour and shields. You can apply either your Constitution modifier or your Intelligence modifier to this skill.

Tough as Nails

When determining how much equipment you can carry, use either your Strength score or your Constitution score + your Strength modifier, whichever is higher.

Bonus Feats

At 2nd, 6th, 10th, 14th and 18th levels, you gain a bonus feat. The feat must come from the Armor category. You must still meet the usual prerequisites for the feat.

Armor Pool

As an armiger, you are trained to deflect blows on your armour and catch them on your shield, all the while waiting for opportunities to make a devastating riposte. You gain access to a pool of armor tokens. Each time that your passive defenses negate at least 5 points of damage from an opponent's attack, you gain 1 token.

On your turn, you can decide to treat all active defense bonuses that would apply against attacks on you in that round as passive. If you do this, your total defense score equals your passive defense score, so you gain a token on any attack that misses you. However, your active defense is treated as 10 (less any active defense penalties), so you should beware of attacks that can only be avoided by active defenses, such as a wraith's incorporeal touch attack.

Your decision whether to treat active bonuses as passive is made at the start of a round, before any attacks are actually made against you, and applies to all attacks in that round. If you lose your active bonus to defense against an attack, you similarly lose any passive bonus that would have accrued had you converted your active bonus to passive.

Certain Armor and Shield Mastery feats also grant armor tokens when an opponent attacks you, as given above. The maximum number of tokens you can gain on any attack is equal to 1 + 1/4 your armiger level, rounded down.

Armor Abilities

Unless otherwise stated:

Fortified Defense: You have the ability to turn aside blows that would otherwise be lethal. If you are struck by a critical hit or sneak attack, you can spend armor tokens to negate the extra damage. Each token spent increases the chance of negating the extra damage by +10%, to a maximum of 99%. The number of tokens you can spend is limited to half your armiger level.

Special: A natural 100 on the percentile die roll always fails.

Armored Trap: When an opponent hits you in melee, you can spend 2 armor tokens to force them to lose any remaining actions until the end of your turn, This includes additional attacks from a full attack action, as well as the ability to make attacks of opportunity. A Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 your armiger level + your Constitution modifier + additional tokens spent) negates this effect. You can spend up to 10 additional tokens to increase the DC of the save.

Iron-Sheathed Counterattack: When an opponent hits you in melee, you can spend 4 armor tokens to gain an attack of opportunity against them. Remember that unless you have the Combat Reflexes expanded mastery 7 feat, you can only make one attack of opportunity against an opponent per round.

Combat Magnet: On your turn, you must have chosen the (improved) fight defensively attack challenge, or the standard or full defense action, to use this ability. Spend 1 armor token when an opponent who threatens you, and who has previously attacked you in that encounter, tries to attack an ally of yours. Your opponent must make a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 your armiger level + your Constitution modifier + additional tokens spent) or resolve the attack against you instead. You can spend up to 10 additional tokens to increase the DC of the save. This also affects all subsequent attacks your opponent may make until the end of their turn.

Indomitable Wall of Iron: If an opponent hits you, you can increase your damage reduction against that attack by 1 point per armor token spent. You can spend a number of tokens on this ability up to half your armiger level.

Distracting Lure: Spend 4 armor tokens when an opponent attacks you. Your opponent must make a Reflex save (DC 10 + 1/2 your armiger level + additional tokens spent) or lose their active bonus to defense against the next attack that targets them, provided it is made before the beginning of their next turn. You can spend up to 10 additional tokens to increase the DC of the save.

Draining Defense: Spend 1 armor token when an opponent attacks you in melee. Your opponent must make a Fortitude save (DC 10 + 1/2 your armiger level + your Constitution modifier + additional tokens spent) or be fatigued for 2d4 rounds. You can spend up to 10 additional tokens to increase the DC of the save. A fatigued creature can’t run or charge, and suffers a -2 penalty to Strength and Dexterity. You cannot use this ability to impose a condition worse than “fatigued” upon a creature.

Defensive Stance: When an opponent hits you, but before rolling damage, you can spend 2 tokens to force an immediate reroll of the attack. You must take the result of the reroll, even if it’s better than the original roll. You cannot use this ability if your opponent scores a critical hit.

Sentinel’s Defense: When an opponent attempts to grapple, overrun or bull rush you, spend 4 tokens to make an immediate attack of opportunity against them even if you would not normally gain such an attack (if you would normally gain such an attack, you do not get an extra one). If you hit, add any damage you inflict to your result on the opposed check.

Unyielding Defense

Beginning at 4th level, on your turn you can take a -4 penalty to attacks to gain a +2 bonus to your damage reduction for 1 round. The penalty applies to all attacks you make for that round, including any attacks of opportunity. The bonus damage reduction only applies to attacks from opponents you are aware of, and against whom you have not lost your active bonus to defense.

Improved Unyielding Defense

At 12th level, when you use unyielding defense, the bonus to your damage reduction increases to +4.

Armored Redoubt

Beginning at 5th level, you grant a +6 cover bonus against ranged attacks to allies who are adjacent to you. You gain a +4 bonus on defense, checks, or saves against any attack that would force you to move or knock you prone.

Reinforced Defenses

You gain this ability at 9th level. If an opponent strikes you with a weapon that would normally ignore your damage reduction (such as a demon’s claw), you may still roll your normal damage reduction and apply half the result, rounded down, against the damage from the attack.

Supreme Reinforced Defenses

At 20th level, you gain the full benefit of your damage reduction, even against attacks that would normally ignore it.

Armiger Strategy

As an armiger, your role is to be an invulnerable tank. You can stand in the middle of combat and soak attacks, while taking less damage than nearly every other character. Not only that, but the more that your enemies beat uselessly against your armour, the more opportunities you get to strike back.

In fact, a problem you may face is that more experienced opponents may choose to give you a wide berth, targeting your companions instead: not only are they easier to hurt, but they don't become more dangerous after being attacked. While this is advantageous in some ways (if nobody attacks you, you're in no danger of being killed, and you also have free rein to use defense challenges to cause mayhem), it may be anticlimactic to have a character spoiling for a fight but have people refusing to face him. There are a few ways to deal with this.

First, you should examine the battlefield to see if there are ways to exploit the terrain or circumstances to your advantage. For example, if your enemies have to move through a narrow passageway to engage your party, you can position yourself to block the passage. This forces your enemies to either attack you or move through your threatened area, thus attracting attacks of opportunity; Combat  Reflexes is a very good feat choice if you intend to do this regularly. If there are locations or characters that are critical to the fight — the cultists are guarding a portal to the lower planes, say, or an evil sorcerer is completing an arcane ritual — then you can advance to threaten them, thus again forcing the enemy to fight you.

Second, you can directly call out to your opponents to engage you in melee. The Savage Appearance trait is one way of achieving this (perhaps your armour has features that are ominous and forbidding, thus drawing attention to you in combat); another is to use a battlefield challenge. If you use the latter option, you should also consider the expanded mastery 2 feat from the Champion of Battle feat chain. This isn't entirely foolproof (your foe could beat your roll, or they might attack you from range, or they might still choose to ignore you, accepting the morale penalty for doing so) but it should at least give your opponents another headache to deal with.

Related Material

These changes should be used together with the revised armor feats.


Last updated: 31 May 2006

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